I am not a huge sports fan. I know I will take a few hits on my man card for admitting this, but it’s true. I suppose it would be fair to say that the only sport I enjoy watching on tv is college football. I can take it or leave it on just about everything else. I would definitely lose no sleep if the NBA dissolved tomorrow. But the Olympics. I am addicted. As much as I enjoy taking our country to task for the many things we do wrong, every 4 years I am at the front of the crowd screaming “’MURICA!!!” Hell, I even enjoy watching archery.
I enjoy watching the lead ups and history of the athletes. The home movies of early gym sessions. The feel good, overcoming mountains of obstacles stories that accompany the games. Having children in competitive gymnastics, I have the smallest window of insight into what these folks have invested to get where they are. A lifetime of long days at the gym. A lifetime of preparation and sacrifices by the athletes and their families. Races and competitions won or lost by hundredths of a point and thousandths of a second. That is why I teared up watching Jordyn Weber not make the cut for the all around womens’ gymnastics title. The utter disappointment on that girls face is a level of letdown I hope to never know. That’s what makes the games great. So much on the line, to be won or lost. Just incredible.
I also find it endlessly intriguing to watch people that good at anything. Watching the mens’ gymnastics event the other night, I was thinking “these athletes are the perfect physical human form”, in as much of a non- gay way as possible. It is impossible to achieve more physical perfection. I watched a documentary on Michael Phelps a few years back that examined his physical form as it pertained to swimming. Basically it said that if you created the perfect swimmer in a lab, taking into account every single attribute that makes human beings better swimmers, your machine would spit out Michael Phelps. Usain Bolt. Misty and Carrie. The Fab Five. Perfect humans at what they do.
Well, I have to go. The US is currently tied with those dirty communists from China and I think my “USA is #1 Suck It World” bumper sticker just came in the mail. Enjoy the games folks. They really are something special. It is a time when the world comes together (my Suck It World bumper sticker not withstanding) And, Lord knows, we really like those volleyball shorts.